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Extending Access via MySQL

Dec 01, 20031 min

* Dr. Internet columnist Steve Blass offers advice on how to handle a growing Access database

Our Microsoft Access database is growing rapidly and getting harder to share effectively. Our IT team said we can use table space in a central MySQL-DB database. Can we still use Access at the desktop to work with data in a MySQL database?

To use Access as a client for a centralized SQL database you can establish a link to the central database by configuring an Open DataBase Connectivity (ODBC) data source to handle the connections.

The driver required for Microsoft SQL databases is usually available without installing additional software on your PC.

To connect to a MySQL database install the Connector/ODBC software from After you download and install the Connector/ODBC driver, configure an ODBC data source for the MySQL database through the data source selection in your PC’s control panel.

Once the ODBC data source is set up, open Access and choose Open from the File menu. Choose “ODBC databases” from the “Files of type:” options and pick out the MyODBC data source you configured from the “Machine Data Source” tab in the selection dialog.

Follow the instructions in the manual from to export your Access database into MySQL.